Sarah Barran

MDEI alumna; Designer, Mobile Banking Customer Experience, Scotiabank

Sarah Barran“The Master of Digital Experience Innovation really gave me a better understanding of how user experience could be applied to different aspects of media development. Designing a poster, a website, or the signs on a street corner all involve user experience in some way.” Sarah Barran received her MDEI in 2012 and has since gone on to work as a designer for startup company Powernoodle and now Scotiabank. Her role involves familiarizing herself with the mobile application and the visual and functional differences across platforms. She then looks for ways to improve the user experience and develop new features.

“While I was in school, my goal was to join a creative agency working on visual designs for various print and digital media. While visual design is still my main focus, I’ve learned the limits of my artistic abilities and have shifted my focus to user experience design.” As an avid app-user, Sarah enjoys the process of analyzing user flows, identifying problems, and creating solutions. “I would eventually like to move to video games – working on menus, HUDs, and other interface elements that contribute to an immersive gaming experience.”

When asked what she would say to current graduate students exploring the job market, Sarah shared three key pieces of advice. “Expose yourself to things outside of your experience. Networking is huge; it is important to make connections in the industry and soak up knowledge from those with more experience. And lastly, if you have an idea and you can find the resources, pursue your own project. Nothing ventured, nothing gained and you’ll be kicking yourself when you see your idea making money for someone else.”

University of Waterloo

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